Pumpkinflowers Book
Score: 4
From 59 Ratings

Pumpkinflowers


  • Author : Matti Friedman
  • Publisher : Biteback Publishing
  • Release Date : 2016-05-03
  • Genre: History
  • Pages : 256
  • ISBN 10 : 9781785900716

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Pumpkinflowers Excerpt :

It was just one remote hilltop in an unnamed war in the late 1990s, but it would send out ripples that are still felt today, foreshadowing the chaos of 21st-century conflicts in the Middle East. The hill, in Lebanon, was called the Pumpkin; ‘flowers’ was the military code word for casualties. Part memoir, part reportage and part haunting elegy for lost youth, award-winning writer Matti Friedman’s powerful account follows the band of young soldiers - the author among them - conscripted out of high school into holding this remote outpost, and explores how the task would change them forever. Pumpkinflowers is a lyrical yet devastating insight into the day-today realities of war, and a powerful coming-of-age narrative. Raw and beautifully rendered, this essential chronicle casts an unflinching look at the nature of modern warfare, in which there is never a clear victor and innocence is not all that is lost.

Summary of Matti Friedman s Pumpkinflowers Book

Summary of Matti Friedman s Pumpkinflowers


  • Author : Everest Media,
  • Publisher : Everest Media LLC
  • Release Date : 2022-05-15T22:59:00Z
  • Genre: History
  • Pages : 25
  • ISBN 10 : 9798822511507

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Summary of Matti Friedman s Pumpkinflowers Excerpt :

Please note: This is a companion version & not the original book. Sample Book Insights: #1 Avi was another example of the kind of person changed or ground up by war. He was suspicious of institutions like the military, and his experiences would confirm that suspicions were justified. #2 The army was still very much the old army, with old ideas about war, but the war for which Avi was bound was different and augured others to come. The world that day at the desert base was the past. #3 The army replaced the trappings of Avi’s former life with new objects. These included a rifle, boots of stiff red leather, fatigues distributed in unpredictable sizes by harried quartermasters, and golden bullets. #4 The danger of innocence is that it can be cracked easily by stupidity and cruelty. And so not much time had passed before A. began thinking that perhaps it was not right that he was the only one who was not late. His concern grew when he heard the other members of the platoon saying that the regular punishments of running back and forth were not even punishments for something they had done wrong.

Spies of No Country Book
Score: 3
From 4 Ratings

Spies of No Country


  • Author : Matti Friedman
  • Publisher : Signal
  • Release Date : 2019-03-05
  • Genre: Biography & Autobiography
  • Pages : 272
  • ISBN 10 : 9780771038839

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Spies of No Country Excerpt :

From the award-winning and critically-acclaimed author of Pumpkinflowers, the never-before-told story of the mysterious "Arab Section": the Jewish-"Arab" spies who, under deep cover in Beirut as refugees, helped the new State of Israel win the War of Independence. In his third non-fiction book, Matti Friedman introduces us to four unknown young men who are caught up in the fraught events surrounding the birth of Israel in 1948 and drawn into secret lives, becoming the nucleus of Israel's intelligence service. The tiny, amateur unit known as the "Arab Section" was conceived during WWII by British spies and by Jewish militia leaders in Palestine. Consisting of Jews from Arab countries who could pass as Arabs, it was meant to gather intelligence and carry out sabotage and assassinations. When the first Jewish-Arab war erupted in 1948 and Palestinian refugees began fleeing the fighting, a small number of Section agents disguised as refugees joined the exodus. They fled to Beirut, where they spent the next two years under cover, sending messages back to Israel over a radio antenna disguised as a clothesline. Of the dozen men in the unit at the war's beginning, five were caught and executed. Espionage, John le Carré once wrote, is the "secret theater of our society." Spies of No Country is not just a spy story, but a surprising window into the nature of Israel--a country that sees itself as belonging to the story of Europe, but where more than half of the population is native to the Middle East. Starring complicated characters with slippery identities moving in the shadow of great events, Spies of No Country tells a very different story about what Israel is and how it was created.

The Aleppo Codex Book
Score: 4
From 5 Ratings

The Aleppo Codex


  • Author : Matti Friedman
  • Publisher : Algonquin Books
  • Release Date : 2013-05-14
  • Genre: History
  • Pages : 320
  • ISBN 10 : 9781616202705

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The Aleppo Codex Excerpt :

Winner of the 2014 Sami Rohr Prize for Jewish Literature A thousand years ago, the most perfect copy of the Hebrew Bible was written. It was kept safe through one upheaval after another in the Middle East, and by the 1940s it was housed in a dark grotto in Aleppo, Syria, and had become known around the world as the Aleppo Codex. Journalist Matti Friedman’s true-life detective story traces how this precious manuscript was smuggled from its hiding place in Syria into the newly founded state of Israel and how and why many of its most sacred and valuable pages went missing. It’s a tale that involves grizzled secret agents, pious clergymen, shrewd antiquities collectors, and highly placed national figures who, as it turns out, would do anything to get their hands on an ancient, decaying book. What it reveals are uncomfortable truths about greed, state cover-ups, and the fascinating role of historical treasures in creating a national identity.

Killing a King  The Assassination of Yitzhak Rabin and the Remaking of Israel Book
Score: 4
From 1 Ratings

Killing a King The Assassination of Yitzhak Rabin and the Remaking of Israel


  • Author : Dan Ephron
  • Publisher : W. W. Norton & Company
  • Release Date : 2015-10-19
  • Genre: History
  • Pages : 352
  • ISBN 10 : 9780393242102

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Killing a King The Assassination of Yitzhak Rabin and the Remaking of Israel Excerpt :

Winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize in History and one of the New York Times’s 100 Notable Books of the Year. The assassination of Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin remains the single most consequential event in Israel’s recent history, and one that fundamentally altered the trajectory for both Israel and the Palestinians. In Killing a King, Dan Ephron relates the parallel stories of Rabin and his stalker, Yigal Amir, over the two years leading up to the assassination, as one of them planned political deals he hoped would lead to peace, and the other plotted murder. "Carefully reported, clearly presented, concise and gripping," It stands as "a reminder that what happened on a Tel Aviv sidewalk 20 years ago is as important to understanding Israel as any of its wars" (Matti Friedman, The Washington Post).

The Rise of the G I  Army  1940   1941 Book
Score: 5
From 1 Ratings

The Rise of the G I Army 1940 1941


  • Author : Paul Dickson
  • Publisher : Atlantic Monthly Press
  • Release Date : 2020-07-07
  • Genre: History
  • Pages : 580
  • ISBN 10 : 9780802147684

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The Rise of the G I Army 1940 1941 Excerpt :

“A must-read book that explores a vital pre-war effort [with] deep research and gripping writing.” —Washington Times In The rise of the G.I. Army, 1940–1941, Paul Dickson tells the dramatic story of how the American Army was mobilized from scattered outposts two years before Pearl Harbor into the disciplined and mobile fighting force that helped win World War II. In September 1939, when Nazi Germany invaded Poland and initiated World War II, America had strong isolationist leanings. The US Army stood at fewer than 200,000 men—unprepared to defend the country, much less carry the fight to Europe and the Far East. And yet, less than a year after Pearl Harbor, the American army led the Allied invasion of North Africa, beginning the campaign that would defeat Germany, and the Navy and Marines were fully engaged with Japan in the Pacific. Dickson chronicles this transformation from Franklin Roosevelt’s selection of George C. Marshall to be Army Chief of Staff to the remarkable peace-time draft of 1940 and the massive and unprecedented mock battles in Tennessee, Louisiana, and the Carolinas by which the skill and spirit of the Army were forged and out of which iconic leaders like Eisenhower, Bradley, and Clark emerged. The narrative unfolds against a backdrop of political and cultural isolationist resistance and racial tension at home, and the increasingly perceived threat of attack from both Germany and Japan.

Who by Fire Book

Who by Fire


  • Author : Matti Friedman
  • Publisher : Unknown
  • Release Date : 2022
  • Genre: Composers
  • Pages : null
  • ISBN 10 : 1954118082

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Who by Fire Excerpt :

"An expedition into the troubled soul of one of the world's greatest songwriters."--Haaretz "Not only is a hidden side of Cohen revealed but so too a hidden side of Israel." --David BezmogisThe little-known story of Leonard Cohen's concert tour to the front lines of the Yom Kippur War, including never-before-seen selections from an unfinished manuscript by Cohen and rare photographs In October 1973, the poet and singer Leonard Cohen--thirty-nine years old, famous, unhappy, and at a creative dead end--traveled from his home on the Greek island of Hydra to the chaos and bloodshed of the Sinai desert when Egypt attacked Israel on the Jewish high holiday of Yom Kippur. Moving around the front with a guitar and a group of local musicians, Cohen met hundreds of young soldiers, men and women at the worst moment of their lives. Those who survived never forgot the experience. And the war transformed Cohen. He had announced that he was abandoning his music career, but he instead returned to Hydra and to his family, had a second child, and released one of the best albums of his career. In Who by Fire, journalist Matti Friedman gives us a riveting account of those weeks in the Sinai, drawing on Cohen's previously unpublished writing and original reporting to create a kaleidoscopic depiction of a harrowing, formative moment for both a young country at war and a singer at a crossroads.

A Bed of Red Flowers Book
Score: 4
From 2 Ratings

A Bed of Red Flowers


  • Author : Nelofer Pazira
  • Publisher : Vintage Canada
  • Release Date : 2010-07-30
  • Genre: Biography & Autobiography
  • Pages : 432
  • ISBN 10 : 9780307370860

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A Bed of Red Flowers Excerpt :

As a young girl growing up in 1970s Afghanistan, Nelofer Pazira seems destined for a bright future. The daughter of liberal-minded professionals, she enjoys a safe, loving and privileged life. Some of her early memories include convivial family picnics and New Years’ celebrations overlooking the thousands of red flowers that carpet the hills of Mazar. But Nelofer’s world is shattered when she is just five and her father is imprisoned for refusing to support the communist party. This episode plants a “seed of anger” in her, which is given plenty of opportunity to grow as the years unfold. In 1979, the Soviets invade Afghanistan beginning a ten-year occupation. The country becomes an armed camp with Russians fighting U.S.-backed mujahidin fighters while trying to impose military rule. For Nelofer, daily life includes an endless succession of tanks, rockets screaming overhead and explosions in the street. During this time, she and her best friend, Dyana, seek refuge in their love of poetry. At eleven, the two girls throw stones at Soviet tanks and plot other acts of rebellion at the local school. As Nelofer gets older, she joins the resistance movement, distributes contraband books, studies guerilla warfare and hides a gun in her parent’s mint garden. When Nelofer’s younger brother comes home from school in military garb, the family finally decides to flee Afghanistan. What follows is a perilous, clandestine journey across rugged mountains into Pakistan. But the life of a refugee is not what Nelofer expects. Though she once idealized the mujahidin as freedom fighters, she is shocked, as a woman, to find herself stripped of her personal freedom in their midst. In 1990, Nelofer and her family are offered refugee status in Canada. Here she corresponds with her friend Dyana, whose letters reveal the increasing oppression of life under the Taliban. Fearing that her friend will kill herself, Pazira returns to Afghanistan to rescue her. This search becomes the bas

God s Crucible  Islam and the Making of Europe  570 1215 Book
Score: 3
From 9 Ratings

God s Crucible Islam and the Making of Europe 570 1215


  • Author : David Levering Lewis
  • Publisher : W. W. Norton & Company
  • Release Date : 2009-01-12
  • Genre: History
  • Pages : 384
  • ISBN 10 : 0393067904

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God s Crucible Islam and the Making of Europe 570 1215 Excerpt :

From the two-time Pulitzer Prize–winning author, God’s Crucible brings to life “a furiously complex age” (New York Times Book Review). Resonating as profoundly today as when it was first published to widespread critical acclaim a decade ago, God’s Crucible is a bold portrait of Islamic Spain and the birth of modern Europe from one of our greatest historians. David Levering Lewis’s narrative, filled with accounts of some of the most epic battles in world history, reveals how cosmopolitan, Muslim al-Andalus flourished—a beacon of cooperation and tolerance—while proto-Europe floundered in opposition to Islam, making virtues out of hereditary aristocracy, religious intolerance, perpetual war, and slavery. This masterful history begins with the fall of the Persian and Roman empires, followed by the rise of the prophet Muhammad and five centuries of engagement between the Muslim imperium and an emerging Europe. Essential and urgent, God’s Crucible underscores the importance of these early, world-altering events whose influence remains as current as today’s headlines.

The Moral Lives of Israelis Book

The Moral Lives of Israelis


  • Author : David Berlin
  • Publisher : Vintage Canada
  • Release Date : 2012-08-14
  • Genre: History
  • Pages : 322
  • ISBN 10 : 9780307356307

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The Moral Lives of Israelis Excerpt :

The Moral Lives of Israelis explores the last ten years of life in Israel, a sixty-one-year-old country that has never not been in a state of war. The last words given to David Berlin by his father, a Sabra who had fought for Israel's independence, were not words of love for his son and his grandchildren, but this command: "Look after my little country." These words set off a huge voyage of exploration and remembrance for Berlin. The result is a thrilling blend of memoir, reportage and original thinking on the place of Israel in the world. The fundamental question that floats over every page of this passionate book is, with so many missteps and in a region deeply fraught with antagonism, racism and misunderstanding, how can Israel move forward? After many dead ends and twists and turns, it is the nineteenth-century visionary father of Zionism, Theodor Herzl, who ultimately sparks Berlin's dream for Israel in the twenty-first century--it is Herzl's insistence on a secular and cosmopolitan state that Berlin sees as a way to move beyond. David Berlin's brave inquiry brings a startling new perspective to a question that resonates well beyond the borders of Israel.

Saffron Sky Book
Score: 4
From 2 Ratings

Saffron Sky


  • Author : Galareh Asayesh
  • Publisher : Beacon Press
  • Release Date : 2000-10-19
  • Genre: Cooking
  • Pages : 244
  • ISBN 10 : 0807072117

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Saffron Sky Excerpt :

This lyrical memoir evinces the author's passion for constructing an American life with the spiritual fervor and deeply aesthetic rituals that were part of her childhood in Iran. Asayesh, who immigrated to North Carolina as a girl, writes too of her struggle to arrive at an acceptable sexuality in the face of parental panic, and tells of her frustration, during later trips to post-Shah Iran, with "the sisters," the Ayatollah's ubiquitous enforcers of female modesty.

Life in Year One Book
Score: 3.5
From 5 Ratings

Life in Year One


  • Author : Scott Korb
  • Publisher : Penguin
  • Release Date : 2010-03-18
  • Genre: History
  • Pages : 256
  • ISBN 10 : 9781101186015

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Life in Year One Excerpt :

For anyone who's ever pondered what everyday life was like during the time of Jesus comes a lively and illuminating portrait of the nearly unknown world of daily life in first-century Palestine. What was it like to live during the time of Jesus? Where did people live? Who did they marry? And what was family life like? How did people survive? These are just some of the questions that Scott Korb answers in this engaging new book, which explores what everyday life entailed two thousand years ago in first-century Palestine, that tumultuous era when the Roman Empire was at its zenith and a new religion-Christianity-was born. Culling information from primary sources, scholarly research, and his own travels and observations, Korb explores the nitty-gritty of real life back then-from how people fed, housed, and groomed themselves to how they kept themselves healthy. He guides the contemporary reader through the maze of customs and traditions that dictated life under the numerous groups, tribes, and peoples in the eastern Mediterranean that Rome governed two thousand years ago, and he illuminates the intriguing details of marriage, family life, health, and a host of other aspects of first-century life. The result is a book for everyone, from the armchair traveler to the amateur historian. With surprising revelations about politics and medicine, crime and personal hygiene, this book is smart and accessible popular history at its very best.

New State  Modern Statesman Book

New State Modern Statesman


  • Author : Roger Boyes
  • Publisher : Biteback Publishing
  • Release Date : 2018-02-15
  • Genre: Political Science
  • Pages : 320
  • ISBN 10 : 9781785903304

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New State Modern Statesman Excerpt :

In a period when Western military engagement has unleashed violent sectarianism global terrorism, and become a catalyst for the biggest exodus of migrants since the Second World War, the 1999 Nato intervention in Kosovo remains a unique and shining example of a process that led to a peaceful transition from vicious ethnic war to modern democracy. Less than twenty years ago, a young ethnic Albanian student leader called Hashim Thaçi, led a revolution against Slobodan Milosevic, the Serbian tyrant with the biggest military force in Europe, and convinced the West to bomb Belgrade out of Kosovo. The aerial bombardment beckoned a period of unrivalled peace in the Balkans which Western leaders who sought to subsequently overturn other tyrannies in foreign lands would view with envy as a rare successful model. Nato intervention in Kosovo, led by Tony Blair and Bill Clinton, resulted in democracy and the rule of law. By contrast, however, attempts by George W. Bush to effect regime change in Iraq and Afghanistan, and by America, Britain and France to do the same in Libya, have left lethal power vacuums filled by Islamist insurgents, and brought about the downfall of Western leaders themselves. This book is the story of the rare success of Western military intervention and the first biography of the new President of Kosovo, the youngest country in Europe.

Losing Afghanistan Book

Losing Afghanistan


  • Author : Noah Coburn
  • Publisher : Stanford University Press
  • Release Date : 2016-02-03
  • Genre: Social Science
  • Pages : 260
  • ISBN 10 : 0804796637

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Losing Afghanistan Excerpt :

The U.S.-led intervention in Afghanistan mobilized troops, funds, and people on an international level not seen since World War II. Hundreds of thousands of individuals and tens of billions of dollars flowed into the country. But what was gained for Afghanistan—or for the international community that footed the bill? Why did development money not lead to more development? Why did a military presence make things more dangerous? Through the stories of four individuals—an ambassador, a Navy SEAL, a young Afghan businessman, and a wind energy engineer—Noah Coburn weaves a vivid account of the challenges and contradictions of life during the intervention. Looking particularly at the communities around Bagram Airbase, this ethnography considers how Afghans viewed and attempted to use the intervention and how those at the base tried to understand the communities around them. These compelling stories step outside the tired paradigms of 'unruly' Afghan tribes, an effective Taliban resistance, and a corrupt Karzai government to show how the intervention became an entity unto itself, one doomed to collapse under the weight of its own bureaucracy and contradictory intentions.